Sunday, March 29, 2009

Knowing Your Limits Pays Off

After the lovely excitement last Wednesday, we were blessed with a couple of days of great weather. Unfortunately for me, I didn't get to take advantage of them.

Thursday afternoon was Madison's first track meet. She was selected to run the 400 meter and there was no way I was missing it. We weren't sure what order the events would be in, so I went straight from work to the stadium. It was a beautiful day for a track meet. And I got to enjoy a couple of hours of it sitting in the stands waiting for her to run. Yes, it took that long. She ended up 4th place - out of 4, but I was so proud of her. I didn't have my stop watch and they didn't post official times, but according to my watch, she ran that 400 meters in about 1:30. That, my friends, is faster than I can run 400 meters! And she never gave up, even when it was obvious she would come in last place. And so, that's how I spend my Thursday evening.

Friday was spent doing laundry and running errands. I had already decided to "rest" on Friday because I had a scheduled long bike ride and a 10K race for the weekend. And the forecast showed the winds would be returning for Saturday's bike.

I woke up early Saturday to head for the Rosedale Ride. My original plan was to do the 62 mile route. I did it last week and felt great and then ran 5 miles the next day, so why not? Well, I'll tell you why not. It's called 20-25 mph wind with 40 degree temps, lots of hills and horrible chip seal roads. One of these at a time I can deal with, but all three combined. Forget it. I had started out with a group doing the 62 miles, but got a little behind them and just decided I wasn't going to push it. So, at the first aid station I stopped and waited for a couple guys from our team who were a little behind us and were doing the 42 mile route. The three of us headed off at a nice relaxed (sometimes a little slow) pace and had a great time riding. I hung out with the team for a while after the ride before heading back home.

And I'm glad I made that decision, because today I totally rocked my 10K. My previous record for a 10K is 59:20. Today's time on that same course: 55:50. Oh YEAH! And it felt great. The temps were still in the 40s, but I know myself when I run. Forty degrees is shorts for me. I did have on a long sleeve under armour shirt on top. I was freezing at the start, but once I got going I warmed up fast. In fact, at one point I wished I hadn't worn long sleeves. But I didn't let it get to me. And I didn't look at my accumulated time at all during the race - just my splits as I hit each mile. I knew if I kept each mile under 9:30 I'd beat my time. Here are my splits:

Mile 1: 9:06
Mile 2: 8:35
Mile 3: 9:23
Mile 4: 8:55
Mile 5: 8:49
Mile 6: 9:13
last .2: 1:46

Goal accomplished!

If I would have pushed on and finished the 62 miles yesterday, I know I could have finished the 10K today, and probably in a decent time, but I don't think I could have done it in 55 minutes.

After the 10K, I headed back to our church. The youth group was in charge of worship at our Creekside Gathering and I didn't want to miss it. I put on a little makeup in the car, sprayed myself with some Vanilla Body Mist from Bath & Body Works and headed in for worship. And I'm glad I did. The youth did a wonderful job and had a great message.

After church I took Roscoe for a walk and then spent some quality time in the hammock. Nice!!!

And speaking of dogs, they both are doing great. Roscoe loves his daily walks and gets a little hyper without them. Tank has lots of energy as well and sometimes we have to send them outside because they play too much in the house. They like to play chase and they go full speed. Roscoe is very protective of the home and when he hears or sees something unusual he will go to the front window and growl or bark. Once we look and know things are ok, he is fine. He's a very spoiled dog and is loving his forever home. Tank has adjusted well, too. He likes to antagonize Roscoe at times and nips at Roscoe's feet. But he can be a cuddle dog as well. He sleeps in his kennel in Dalton's room and knows when it is night-night time. They keep us on our toes, but we wouldn't trade them for anything.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

You Know It's Springtime In Texas When......

The weather goes from 80's on Sunday to rain and hail today. This is what my yard looked like about 6pm. That white stuff isn't snow. It's hail!!!

After a gorgeous day Saturday, we had a repeat on Sunday. We had gone to late church because we had a meeting at noon. I probably should have gone for another long bike ride, but I've got a 10K race coming up so I decided to run instead. I got 5 miles in and then a nap on the hammock. Nice!

Monday was still nice but I was short on time so I only got in a 3 mile run. Tuesday brought rain during the day but by evening it was dry and overcast. I went out for a nice easy spin on the bike. Only got in 13.78 miles before having to get ready for yet another meeting.

And then there was today. The weather forecast indicated it would storm today. All day the weather was just overcast, but no storms. I wondered if the forecast was wrong. Then before I left work I checked to see what the weather was going to be so I'd know what kind of workout I could get in. When I checked, I discovered we were under a Tornado Watch. Now, that happens a lot here so I wasn't too worried, but I decided I'd walk Roscoe as soon as I got home to get that out of the way and then I'd run on the treadmill instead of biking outside like I wanted.

I got home, got Roscoe walked and turned on the tv as I got on the treadmill. Yikes! There was a storm coming. And it was a big one. One with possible rotations (meaning possible tornadoes). The news even cut Oprah off the air so we could be kept up to date. I did manage to get 5 miles in on the treadmill and just in time. I got off and came downstairs to the first sounds of hail hitting our house. It wasn't as big as I've seen, but it was decent size and was making some noise. I'm just glad I didn't go out for that bike ride and get caught in it. That would hurt!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

A Great Week of Cycling

You have to love when you have great weather for spring break week. And while I didn't technically get a spring break, it seemed like a break because the kids had some down time.

After Monday's run in the hot weather I was looking forward to a good week of cycling, and I got it. My Tuesday night yoga class was cancelled due to spring break, so I got in a 36 mile ride with Patrick, one of the captains on our team. We made pretty good time going out on Parmer, but in typical fashion, once we turned around we had a strong headwind. Uggghhh. Wednesday night, I met Meredith and we did the same ride, only just a little shorter. We got 25 miles in.

I was hoping to get a run in on Thursday before dinner with some friends, but I forgot we had dental appointments, so no time for a run. And of course, after dinner I was too stuffed to run. So Thursday turned into a "rest" day. Since I didn't want two rest days in a row, I ran a nice easy 3 mile run on Friday.

Last weekend I was suppose to do Spokes & Spurs, but it got rained out. Well, today was the makeup ride and we couldn't have asked for better weather. Not many of our teammates did the ride (most of them did the buddy ride elsewhere) but those of us who did the ride had a great time. I wasn't really sure in the beginning if I was going to do the 44 mile route or the 62 mile route. I took my tri bike out today and I haven't been on it much, so I didn't know how I would feel. We had to make the decision at the 25 mile aid station.

When I started out I was with two guys from our team. Two other teammates had started with the 62 mile group, so they were a little ahead of us. We were doing well and I was having a blast on the straights and downhills on the tri bike. I feel like I'm flying on it, especially on the downhills. When we got to the 25 mile aid station we found out we had caught up with our other teammates - and four of us decided we were going for 62. So off we went.

It ended up being a great ride. There are some tough hills toward the finish and they are one right after the other. The hills always get me and I know that is one area I need to improve. It looks like I'll be doing hill repeats again this year when they start back up.

After I got home, I did a little yard work, played with the dogs and then lay in the hammock for a little bit. Then I showered and ate dinner. It's relaxing stuff for the rest of the evening.

This week I've ridden 123 miles on my bike. Wahoo!! I love weeks like this and I LOVE days like today!

Monday, March 16, 2009

The Yo Yo Weather

Well, after the busy week I had last week, yoga Tuesday night was much needed. And I was hopeful for nice weather, but late Tuesday night a cold front blew in and with it came the rain. Yep. The wet stuff that we haven't had here in a long time. We needed the rain, but it kind of put a kink in the workout plan. So Wednesday and Thursday night I ended up on the treadmill (4 & 5 miles).

Friday I picked up my packet for Spokes & Spurs which was a pay ride our team was scheduled to do on Saturday. Only with all the rain, we got notice Friday afternoon that it was cancelled. Friday night one of my mentees had a fundraiser at Pluckers. The kids had been wanting to eat there, so we went for dinner.

With the weather as it has been, the team ride for Saturday got postponed until 10:00 and Dalton's soccer game got cancelled, so we actually got to sleep in! Waking up without an alarm clock is a wonderful thing, even if it is at 7:15 in the morning.

Saturday was still cold and damp, but I went to meet up with the team anyway because I wanted to get a good ride in. However, not many captains or mentors showed up, so the coach asked me to hang toward the back to make sure everyone made it ok. In the end, I only got in a little over 27 miles. And I was freezing.

Came home, took a shower, ran some errands and then headed to the Austin Aztex vs Columbus Crew soccer game. When we went to Ohio last year with Dalton we saw Columbus Crew play in their home stadium. Because of that, we are kind of partial to their team. It was a tough call who we were going to cheer for, but we ended up going for the Aztex. And they won! 1-0. It was a great game and afterwards several of the players from both teams came to the stands. Dalton got lots of autographs, but not from the one Columbus Crew player he wanted. One of his teammates said he was mad they lost and probably wouldn't be coming out. Oh well.

We slept in a little Sunday as well because Madison was at a sleepover and we had told her we would pick her up before Sunday school and then we would go to our Creekside service at 11:00. It ended up being the quarterly breakfast instead of Sunday school, so we had a long wait until the service. After the service I was hoping for a nap because it was still cold and wet outside. I figured I'd take my nap and then ride after that when the weather was suppose to get better. I never did get the nap thanks to the phone, the kids, the dogs...... And I never got that ride in either. I just lay around all day and did absolutely nothing. And it felt good. I haven't had an "off" day like that in a long time because most of the time when I don't work out it's because I have too much other stuff to do. So, it was much needed and much enjoyed.

Today was hard to get up because the kids are on spring break. And I am not. But the weather is back to being in the high 70s / low 80s so I ran outside again today for 5 miles. And I can tell I need to get use to the heat before summer really gets here!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Will It Ever End????

The crazy busy life AND the wind!!!!
Life has been crazy around here as usual, but I just keep plugging away. After last weekend's brutal rides in the wind, I ran 5 miles on Monday in beautiful weather and it felt great. Tuesday I was back at yoga. And I can tell it had been a while. My hamstrings were TIGHT!

Wednesday ended up being a day off. I had my chiro appointment Wednesday, had to pick up contacts for my daughter, and then my daughter had to be at the school at 5:15. They were having family fun night and the choir was performing. They ended up only singing one song, but it was the Star Spangled Banner. The choir director informed us that this was "practice" as they have been invited to sing at the beginning of the Round Rock Express baseball game on April 21st. Wow!!! That will be cool.

Thursday I was back on the bike and back in the wind. Ugh. I decided to take Friday off work to get some things done. The local Leukemia & Lymphoma office was having a group gargage sale as a fundraising avenue for those of us raising money. So, I dropped the kids off at school Friday morning, headed home to run 5 miles, again in the wind, and then spent most of the day cleaning out the garage and getting stuff ready to sell. My parents were kind enough to take the stuff and sit there selling it for me.

Saturday morning's temps looked to be perfect for a bike ride and they were. But, we had 20mph winds again. I had to take a shortcut at one point to get back early and the whole stretch was right into the wind. I tell you, I'm going to rejoice on that first ride without any wind.

After I got back, I had to head home, change real quick and head out of town for a wedding. My husband's cousin's son (did you get that?) was getting married. When we got to my mother-in-law's I showered and got dressed and then we headed for the wedding. Madison was a cake server, so we had bought her a new dress and shoes. Doesn't she look grown up.

And check out the shoes!!!
The wedding was a 4:00 wedding. Lutheran wedding in a German town. That equals bar-b-que and lots of alcohol. When the preacher prays, "Lord, we know the beer has been flowing and we pray that everyone gets home safe and makes it to church in the morning" you know there are some heavy drinkers.

We came home after the wedding and picked up our dogs. We had left Tank with my brother who has a rat terrier and chihuahua and we had left Roscoe at my parents (they live on five fenced acres, so he could run free). Got in bed around 11:00, which with time change meant midnight.

Sunday we got up and went to early church because Dalton had another paintball birthday party to attend at 11:00. Then we went to my neices birthday party at 2:00. She's 15!!!! Then we went to youth group where our kids put together birthing kits. To find out more about this, head over to Cortney's blog.

I was a zombie the rest of the night. So exhausted.

Today was back to work. I hate driving to work in the dark. I ran 5 miles tonight, in the wind. It was blowing about 15mph tonight. Are you seeing a theme yet? I guess it will just make me stronger. After my run, I took Roscoe for his evening walk. He is asleep on the floor next to me right now. I think he is pooped. Tank wears him out and I think he's glad when Tank and Dalton go to bed. Tank sleeps in his kennel in Dalton's room. Roscoe sleeps on the couch! Yep, he's one spoiled dog. And he's mine!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Gluten For Punishment

As if I didn't freeze enough yesterday, I did it again today.

This morning it was cold (in the low 30s) and still windy, but not like yesterday. Todays winds were probably 10-15 mph. My son's two games today were at 8am and 12:30. I looked at the times and said, hmmm, I can get a ride in between those games. So Thursday (before I knew what the weather would be like) I sent out an email asking if anyone wanted to ride.

So this morning, despite the cold, I loaded my bike and headed to the soccer fields. After the game, my family headed to IHOP and warmness while I sat in my car waiting to see if anyone would show up to ride. And someone did. Patrick, one of our captains, came. So, we headed off for a ride. It was really cold at first, but the wind was not like yesterday. Yes, it was still windy, but tolerable. We had a great time chatting and not worrying about speed. After riding a way, I finally warmed up a bit, but as we got close to an hour on my watch (which includes stops at lights, etc.) we had been almost 10 miles and it just seemed like a good time to turn around.

And it was a good thing we did. Once again, we could go faster much easier with the tail wind, but then I got a flat. On the rear tire. Uggghhh. Not again. So, I set out to change it. But I'm not so good when I can't get some air in the tube first and I didn't have my pump with me; only CO2 cartridges. Not wanting to waste CO2 cartridges, I just put the tube in without any air. And somehow ripped a hole in the tube as I put the tire back on the rim. So when we tried to air the tube up with the CO2, the tube did not air up and there went the C02 cartridge. Took it out, put a new tube in and finally got it back on. Rode back to the fields, put the bike up and headed to the 12:30 game.

Dalton's team won big at the last game. Winning all their games put them in first place. We went to the little ceremony so he could get hardware and then headed home. Since I had taken my bike this morning, we went in two different vehicles. On the way home, my family was behind me and my daughter called and said BOTH my break lights were out. Yikes!

As soon as we got home I changed clothes and had my husband follow me to the car place. I needed to get my car inspected anyway, so I just got it all taken care of. I had really hoped for a nice warm shower and then a nap. Instead, I spent most of my afternoon in the waiting area getting my car fixed. But now it's fixed. And I'm pooped. I'm off to veg on the couch.